US Embassy in Dhaka
The United States is closely monitoring the situation in Myanmar, noting that like others, they are very concerned over the growing tensions amid ongoing conflict, an official at the US Embassy in Dhaka said on Monday (February 05, 2024). “We are following it very closely. Obviously, we are very concerned, as the world is concerned. We are also monitoring the situation very very closely,” said Stephen F Ibelli, spokesperson of the US Embassy in Dhaka. He made the remarks while responding to a question on the sideline of the opening of the first ever TechCamp in Bangladesh to empower young journalists. Responding to a question, he said they are looking to work with Bangladesh in key areas like economy and climate change. Read more: What Foreign Minister said on Myanmar’s BGP men taking shelter in Bangladesh He said the United States is the number one foreign direct investor in Bangladesh and the number one location for goods and services exported from Bangladesh. “I think that is very indicative of the interest of the United States and that is also indicative of the fact that we try to partner in the areas in which we have mutual interest,” he added. Asked if the US would withdraw the sanctions imposed on RAB in 2021 and review the visa policy announced in May last year, Stephen said he has no information in this regard, but that after the sanctions, the number of extrajudicial killings declined. On the three-day TechCamp being hosted by the US Embassy in Dhaka, he said it aimed to empower 50 aspiring journalists to fact check, learn best practices on artificial intelligence, and combat misinformation. Stephen Ibelli said, “Every day, we are exposed to so much information that we can barely keep track of. Oftentimes, we mix rumors with facts and truths. It is really easy to become confused. To deal with this challenge, we need to equip ourselves with critical thinking and the correct tools to identify.” Those participating in the workshop can later compete with their ideas on fact-checking, and the best ideas will be supported by the US embassy. Organized by the Educational and Cultural Affairs Bureau (ECA) at the US Department of State, in partnership with the Global Youth Leadership Center (GYLC) Inc., TechCamp fosters technological innovation and empowers future leaders to address real-world challenges through pragmatic solutions. Read more: Here’s how many Myanmar border guards are taking shelter in Bangladesh, according to BGB
US Embassy in Dhaka has alerted its Facebook followers to remain aware of fake profiles. “Stay aware of these deceptive profiles on social media! They may seem official, but they’re faker than a sunflower in the Arctic,” a post from US Embassy’s verified Facebook page today (November 07, 2023) reads. Read: US says it takes any violence leading up to election in Bangladesh ‘incredibly seriously’ The embassy also encouraged netizens not to share personal information and not to engage with requests for money if they encounter any such profile. The US Embassy also encouraged reporting the profiles on the social media platforms.
Bangladesh and the United States are holding the ninth annual bilateral security dialogue in Dhaka as part of "comprehensive security relationship" between the two governments. Khandker Masudul Alam, Director General (North America) is leading the Bangladesh delegation while the US Side is led by Mira Resnick, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Regional Security in the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs. The dialogue began at 9am on Tuesday (September 05, 2023) at the Foreign Service Academy The security dialogue is an annual, civilian-led discussion that touches on all elements of the security relationship between the two countries. Read more: Bangladesh envoy among diplomats taken on tour of Rakhine to view facilities for Rohingya repatriation Representatives from both sides will discuss Indo-Pacific regional issues, security and human rights, military cooperation, peacekeeping, security assistance, and counterterrorism, among other topics, said the US Embassy in Dhaka in a media note. The United States and Bangladesh have a strong security partnership and share many interests in the Indo-Pacific region, said the embassy. Both countries share a vision to ensure the Indo-Pacific region is free, open, peaceful, and secure. This year, the security dialogue closely follows the bilateral defense dialogue, which took place August 23 and 24 in Dhaka. Read more: Bangladesh, Gambia agree on co-deployment of troops in UN peacekeeping The bilateral defense dialogue featured senior officers and civilians from the US and Bangladeshi militaries. They discussed a range of issues specific to the military-to-military relationship, including military education, peacekeeping and upcoming military exercises, including next year’s Disaster Response Exercise & Exchange. The security dialogue covers a wide range of issues related to partnership between the two countries including strategic priorities and regional security issues, defense cooperation, civilian security cooperation, UN peacekeeping, counter-terrorism, and countering violent extremism. Read more: US Deputy Assistant Secretary Mira Resnick in Dhaka
Bangladesh and the United States will hold the ninth annual bilateral security dialogue in Dhaka on September 5 as part of the "comprehensive security relationship" between the two governments. The US delegation will be led by Bureau of Political-Military Affairs Deputy Assistant Secretary Mira Resnick. She arrived in Dhaka on Monday (September 4, 2023). The security dialogue is an annual, civilian-led discussion that touches on all elements of the security relationship between the two countries. Representatives from both sides will discuss Indo-Pacific regional issues, security and human rights, military cooperation, peacekeeping, security assistance, and counterterrorism, among other topics, said the US Embassy in Dhaka in a media note on Sunday. Read: Malaysian envoy hails Showcase Malaysia in strengthening trade relations The United States and Bangladesh have a strong security partnership and share many interests in the Indo-Pacific region, said the embassy. Both countries share a vision to ensure the Indo-Pacific region is free, open, peaceful, and secure. "We have a variety of dialogues throughout the year in pursuit of these mutual objectives," the media note reads. This year, the security dialogue closely follows the bilateral defense dialogue, which took place August 23 and 24 in Dhaka. The bilateral defense dialogue featured senior officers and civilians from the US and Bangladeshi militaries. They discussed a range of issues specific to the military-to-military relationship, including military education, peacekeeping and upcoming military exercises, including next year’s Disaster Response Exercise & Exchange. Read: Dhaka keen to avail regional opportunities for security, connectivity Resnick oversees the Bureau’s Office of Regional Security and Arms Transfers, which manages over $40 billion annually in government-to-government defense equipment transfers through Foreign Military Sales, Third Party Transfers, and Excess Defense Articles. Resnick is also responsible for the Bureau’s Office of Security Assistance, which manages approximately $6.5 billion in US security sector assistance annually; coordinates State Department oversight, planning, and input for over $9 billion in the Defense Department security sector assistance programs; and provides State Department input for Department of Defense planning and military activities. The security dialogue covers a wide range of issues related to partnership between the two countries including strategic priorities and regional security issues, defense cooperation, civilian security cooperation, UN peacekeeping, counter-terrorism, and countering violent extremism. Bangladesh is likely to reiterate its call to return Rashed Chowdhury, a convicted killer of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, to Bangladesh to face justice. The Rohingya issue may also come up for discussion as a threat in the regional and global contexts. Read: Sweden, UNDP continue to work on climate adaptation in Bangladesh At the 8th Security Dialogue held between the two countries at US Department of State in April last year, the two sides had “constructive discussions” on defence agreements like GSOMIA and ACSA as the US is keen to enhance security cooperation with Bangladesh. General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) and Acquisition and Cross Servicing Agreement (ACSA) are “essential” to enable a closer defense relationship, expand opportunities for defense trade, information sharing, and military-to-military cooperation between the United States and Bangladesh. These issues are likely to come up for discussion as follow up, a diplomatic source told UNB.
US Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights, Uzra Zeya, is likely to visit Bangladesh next month to discuss issues of mutual interest. She leads global diplomatic efforts to strengthen democracy, advance universal human rights, support refugees and humanitarian relief, promote rule of law and counternarcotics cooperation, fight corruption and intolerance, prevent armed conflict, and eliminate human trafficking. UN USG Lacroix commends Bangladesh’s proactive role to increase number of women peacekeepers Nothing has been finalised yet, and there is no official announcement from either side regarding the visit. For security reasons, the US Embassy in Dhaka does not usually discuss movements of high-level officials, but a formal announcement will come from the US State Department once things are finalised, a diplomatic source told UNB. Dhaka witnessed a series of visits from Washington in the recent past, including a visit by Under Secretary for Political Affairs, Victoria Nuland, in March 19-23, 2022. Rohingya repatriation: Bangladesh determined for a ‘small trial’, says Shahriar Alam Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs Donald Lu also visited Bangladesh earlier this year. Lu has been heavily involved in setting Washington's Bangladesh policy in the recent past. After the new visa policy was officially announced by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on May 25, Lu appeared as the public face of the move, making appearances in Bangladeshi media to explain how it would be implemented. UN officials praise Bangladeshi peacekeepers during meeting with PM Hasina
The United States has indicated their new Bangladesh-specific visa policy will help Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her government in its efforts to hold free and fair elections. "Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her government have committed to supporting free and fair elections in Bangladesh. This policy is designed to support these efforts and the Bangladeshi people, so they may hold elections to choose their leaders," said the US Embassy in Dhaka, in a message to journalists just after the new policy was announced. The United States said they support free and fair elections everywhere. Also read: New US visa policy declared targeting next Bangladesh polls The message also contained a set of FAQs with responses, through which it clarified certain points that may likely arise in people's minds. To start with, the US Embassy said this policy applies to any individual responsible for, or complicit in, undermining the democratic election process in Bangladesh. This includes current or former Bangladeshi officials, government supporters, and opposition members, among others. This would also include the immediate family members of such persons. The United States said they are committed to building a strong partnership with the government of Bangladesh grounded in democracy and human rights. "We welcome the Prime Minister’s expressed commitment to holding free and fair elections," said the US Embassy. Also read: US govt’s new visa policy does not bother Bangladesh government: Shahriar Alam The United States emphasised it does not support any particular political party, and that their handling of this policy would not favour anyone over another - except on the grounds of undermining electoral democracy. "Restrictions under this new policy target individuals engaging in behavior that undermines the democratic election process, regardless of affiliation." It also assured that it is a general practice to notify individuals whose visas are revoked or cancelled. Given US' "close cooperation" with the government of Bangladesh, the US informed it of this policy decision on May 3. Read more: New visa policy to be implemented fairly on govt & oppn: Donald Lu
The United States has said that they maintain a "broad and deep" relationship with Bangladesh, and that they also want to advance the ties. "The United States maintains a broad and deep relationship with Bangladesh that we seek to advance," an official at the US Embassy in Dhaka told UNB. Read more: PM Hasina: Bangladesh won't buy anything from those who impose sanctions against it The response came when the US Embassy's attention was drawn to a media report that claims more US sanctions could be coming.
The US Embassy in Dhaka has expressed its concern about reports of intimidation and political violence in Dhaka and call on everyone to respect the rule of law. "We are concerned about reports of intimidation and political violence in Dhaka and call on everyone to respect the rule of law and to refrain from violence, harassment, and intimidation," US Ambassador to Bangladesh Peter Haas said in a message through verified Facebook page of the Embassy on Thursday. Read more: 1 killed in police-BNP clash at Nayapaltan; Over 150 leaders, activists held He said they encourage government authorities to investigate these reports of violence and to protect the fundamental freedoms of expression, association, and peaceful assembly. The US Embassy also extended its condolences to the families of those killed and injured yesterday in Dhaka.
Foreign envoys stationed in Dhaka on Friday paid homage to 22 people who lost their lives during the Holey Artisan Bakery attack on July 1, 2016. To mark the sixth anniversary of the attack, Japan's Ambassador to Bangladesh Ito Naoki, Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Vikram Kumar Doraiswami, US Ambassador to Bangladesh Peter Haas joined the Italian embassy in Dhaka in honoring the individuals who lost their lives. Read: Holey Artisan Victim Faraaz's Heroism is Now on the Silver Screen "We remember Abinta Kabir, a U.S.-Bangladeshi dual citizen and student at Emory University, as well as her Emory classmate Faraaz Hossain, who even when given the chance to save himself chose to remain with his friends," said the US embassy in Dhaka.
The United States has congratulated Bangladesh on the momentous opening of the Padma Bridge scheduled Saturday. "It is also another example of Bangladesh’s leadership in promoting regional connectivity in South Asia," said the US Embassy in Dhaka in a media note on Friday. Read: Padma Bridge: How the nation’s dream turns into reality Building sustainable transportation infrastructure to connect people and goods efficiently is important to fostering inclusive economic growth, said the US Embassy. The Padma Bridge will create new and important linkages within Bangladesh, boosting commerce and improving the quality of life, it said. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is scheduled to formally inaugurate the Padma Bridge on Saturday.